Published: Thu, April 12, 2018
Medical | By Bryan Strickland

Thousands gather for Winnie Madikizela-Mandela memorial

Thousands gather for Winnie Madikizela-Mandela memorial

She was referring to the moments after Hector Peterson was shot and Madikizela-Mandela had come running from her house.

Mourners attend a memorial service for late South African anti-apartheid campaigner Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, ex-wife of former South African president Nelson Mandela at Orlando Stadium on April 11, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa.

Shongwe, a Soweto resident, described Madikizela-Mandela as a "strong woman" who had helped them.

"The plan was to discredit her and that was my job, because I had set up a network going all the way up from Johannesburg - believe it or not - all the way to John Major, who was then the Prime Minister of Britain", Erasmus revealed in the interview.

THOUSANDS OF South Africans have come together to remember Winnie Madikizela-Mandela today (April 11).

"She added that there could be no better place to hold a prayer service and celebration of the life of Madikizela-Mandela than in the Free State, whose courageous people had played such a great role in the country's history".

In a social media campaign #Winnie has not died she has multiplied, scores of young women have posted pictures of themselves wearing doeks, the traditional head wrap that Madikizela-Mandela frequently wore.

For Mary who lives in Diepsloot, she was a woman who gave up her personal safety for the people to build a non-racial, non-sexist society. "I don't know where South Africa would be without her - no one can fill her space".

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's Soweto memorial service will be a blend of poetry‚ politics and tributes from her loved ones.

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"It was here in the Free State that Mama Winnie was banished by the racist apartheid government, and where she was sheltered by the community of Majwemasweu township in Brandfort", Molewa said.

"You decide to choose between the nation and your young children and it was a very hard choice to make", Madikizela Mandela said in 2013.

"Even to this day, a parent like me still feels that guilt".

One young woman who was named after Mandela flew in from the Eastern Cape just to be there. She was convicted of abduction and being an accessory to assault and was sentenced to six years' imprisonment.

The charismatic master of ceremonies cried "Long live the fighting spirit of Mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela", and "Viva Soweto!" to spirited chanting from the crowd.

Nonhlanhla Mdluli from Rockville in Soweto stood out in her red Economic Freedom Fighters doek in a sea of green, black and gold.

Madikizela-Mandela had two children with former president Nelson Mandela.

"For those of you who are still trying to drag the name of uMakhulu‚ archbishops and chiefs alike‚ the people are angry‚" Bambatha said.

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